I went on a hike this weekend to Tumbler Ridge, British Columbia. It was a great escape from the flat and dusty Prairies of Alberta. The trip was a bit last minute so I did not prepare a snack, instead I brought a generic store bought, high fructose corn syrup, powerbar with me... to say the least it was not very good. This gave me some inspiration (and motivation) to make some homemade high protein granola bars to enjoy during my road trip and hiking adventures on my way to Kelowna, BC next week for my best friends wedding!
Now, often when people make granola bars they are too crumbly. The key to making granola bars that hold together is honey and brown sugar. Many people may find this much honey and sugar overwhelmingly sweet, my advice, try substituting the brown sugar for pureed dates, which will provide extra flavour, stickiness and nutrients! Feel free to substitute your preferred nuts, seeds, oils and nut butter into your granola bars too. And don't fret if your bars happen be crumbly, worst case scenario you can convert your crumbly bars into plain old granola!
2 cups of oats
1/2 cup of: peanuts, sunflower seeds & chopped pitted dates
1/3 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of: hemp hearts, ground flax & honey
5 tablespoons of peanut butter
3 tablespoons of walnut oil
2 tablespoons of: poppy seeds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, dark chocolate chips
1) Preheat oven to 250 C and line an 8x8 inch pan with parchment paper.
2) Put oil, honey, sugar and peanut butter into a pot. Simmer to melt the sugar.
3) Put all other ingredients in a large bowl and mix together with your hands or a spoon. Add warm oil mixture to the bowl and combine.
4) Pour mixed ingredients into 8x8 inch pan and lightly press down to create an even surface.
5) Bake mixture for 25 minutes in the middle of the oven.
6) Remove from the oven and let cool, then place in the fridge for 2 hours. Remove from the fridge and bring to room temperature. Cut the bars into your desired size, wrap with plastic-wrap for convenience eating on the go!
Enjoy and happy baking!